Joe Buck made the statement on FOX before game one of the World Series that MLB has decided to go with a veteran, experienced, World Series conditioned crew in order to avoid some of the controversy that came about in the earlier playoff series. Nice Try MLB. The sad thing is, I understand that the first base umpire couldn't see that Ryan Howard trapped that ball, He was behind they play. I understand that things happen from game to game that umpires just miss, its the human error factor. My biggest complaint about these umpires is their strike zones.
Yes, of course there is a different home plate umpire for each game, Yes I know each has their own version of the strike zone, and Yes, each team has to stand in the box and hit with that umpires strike zone. My argument is that a strike is a strike and a ball is a ball, call it that way. I have seen more replays of close pitches in this World Series than I have seen replays of close plays. Every time a pitcher winds up and throws a pitch, FOX is showing us a replay with the digital strike zone in the bottom of the screen and the only thing we are learning from it is how bad the home plate umpires have been. Just watching hitters from both teams as an umpire calls a strike is enough to make you see what I mean. They grimace, they complain, they react in a way that tells you that they don't think the pitch was a strike. Then FOX goes to the replay, Tim McCarver says something profound like; "That pitch was a Ball" and K-Zone agrees.
I have spent my entire life watching, playing, coaching this game and I know that complaining about a strike zone gets you no where. The only thing you can ask for is some sort of consistency in the zone and so far through 5 games of this World Series there has been everything but that. Baseball is supposed to have the best umpires officiating the two best teams in the game in the Fall Classic and instead it looks like MLB is conducting an umpire training school. Something has to be done in the future. The umps need to get more accurate and more consistent in their approach. A good umpire is one that nobody notices and this is going to be one of the only World Series where the fans remember the boys in blue just as much as they do the players. But hey, there are only two perfect people in this world...The Lord and Umpires.